Somehow it’s been three years since Palpatine returned.
Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker was our final cinematic disappointment before the COVID-19 pandemic made our lives a near-constant disappointment. While some of us used Chewbacca’s fake demise as a signal to take a break from Star Wars for a while, others have gone on to say, “No, seriously, Andor is really good.” One thing that The Rise Of Skywalker definitely did was end the Star Wars sequel trilogy that made our social media timelines a nightmare for the last decade.
Mileage may vary on those three Star Wars movies, but they still feel too radioactive for Disney to capitalize on their success (those sequels grossed $4 billion). Well, outside of theme park attractions that were clearly in the works for a decade. Still, one common complaint with The Rise Of Skywalker was its handling of the conclusion of The Last Jedi, a retconning so overt it bordered on antagonistic.
Nevertheless, one person who thinks both films have merit is lead actor Daisy Ridley. Though we’ve mostly stopped asking Adam Driver about his Star Wars tenure, Daisy Ridley is, once again, being forced to the frontlines of one of the internet’s most unproductive conversations while promoting her new film, I Think About Dying. Thankfully, Ridley’s an old pro at this by now and answered Rolling Stone’s questions about the final two Star Wars movies diplomatically.
When asked if she appreciated the message of The Last Jedi was retconned by The Rise Of Skywalker, she said:
Well, J.J. [Abrams] was the one who was like, she is of no one, so it wasn’t just The Last Jedi where that was the message. What was interesting about the last one, for me, was that you can be a hero and not come from anywhere or you can be a hero and come from literally the worst person in the universe. You’re not your parents, you’re not your grandparents, you’re not your bloodline and you’re not the generations before you.
Honestly, this could’ve been a statement released about the nepo baby discourse. Or, at least, it would be if she didn’t go on to say that she doesn’t write this crap. She just says the lines. “So, I always was like, sure,” she said. “But it’s beyond my pay grade. I say the words, do the thing. I do love the version of, you can be anyone you want to be, but I also love the version where you can rectify wrongs and can’t help what you’re born into.”
Will this revive the once-fertile topic of Star Wars? Probably not, but it adds juice to the nepo baby conversation, which we’re all dying to continue.